Less Is More, Outer Banks Fall 2013

13 Sep

…or the old KISS Theory

In our workshops, Arnie and I work with people to capture the essence of a scene. If you open up a magazine — assuming you can easily find a real, paper magazine these days — look at the ads. So many advertisers have taken the approach of, “This is expensive, so I am not going to waste any space.”

Maybe so, but where is my eye supposed to go? There is so much “stuff” on the page that my eye is confused.

For those of you who are old enough, think back to the early VW ads for bugs. Big white billboard, little-ish black bug weighted toward the bottom, and the simple statement at the top left, “You’ll get used to us.”

It was clever, and it left no doubt of the message. There is an advantage to what artists call negative space. Rembrandt was the master of it. Hints of details in the shadows for him, but never any question of the subject at hand.

Some of the fashion magazines have great ads. Look at Vanity Fair, for example.

Here are a few example from last fall’s Lighthouses of the Outer Banks

In this one, Arnie is celebrating the reflections and light, but finding patterns in them so that the viewer’s eye wanders around, discovering different elements.© 2013 Arnold Zann. All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278.  919-643-3036 before 9 pm east coast USA, GMT-5, or by e-mail at Arnie (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com.

I like simplicity of subject, so that it stands out; I have always been attracted to this cradle and its relationship to the water.© 2013 Margo Taussig Pinkerton. All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278.  919-643-3036 before 9 pm east coast USA, GMT-5, or by e-mail at TBC (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com.

Arnie seems to have a fascination with pilings as in this one with reflections setting them off.© 2013 Arnold Zann. All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278.  919-643-3036 before 9 pm east coast USA, GMT-5, or by e-mail at Arnie (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com.

In this photograph, I loved the simple arrangement of the clumps of grasses, at least the arrangement was simple once I did some cropping in camera (not later in Lightroom).© 2013 Margo Taussig Pinkerton. All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278.  919-643-3036 before 9 pm east coast USA, GMT-5, or by e-mail at TBC (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com.

So, you do not need to junk up your photograph to make it eye catching and effective. The old KISS theory works. Less is often more!

For more information on our workshops, go to Barefoot Contessa Photo Adventures.

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Blue Craziness in CB

6 Sep

After all the recent business and copyright blogs, it is time for a little fun and frivolity…

We are in Colorado scouting for our workshop in a couple of weeks. It is not that we don’t know this area well, having come and photographed here for years, but it is always good to find new locations and just check things out.

Crested Butte, our base for the workshop, is a great, historic, little town, peppered with gaily-painted, two-story buildings, wonderful restaurants, cute shops, and broad, western streets. Film and other festivals happen here. Those who love outdoor activities — skiing, biking, fishing, hiking, even photographing — come here to enjoy the gorgeous surroundings. People wave to each other across the street, call out to one another. It is a friendly town.

We were surprised to learn that a big ad campaign for a beer company was taking over the town for three days. They paid the town to close off a few blocks with chain link fence and the businesses to serve only their beer for alcoholic consumption. Only a limited number of people, all 21 years of age or older, would be allowed inside the fenced-off area for the three days of festivities. Plane-load upon plane-loads of people were flown in, the winners of their contest along with the executives. The crew came in advance to set up sound systems, lights, banners, hot tubs, volleyball court, and all that is entailed in a big production.
© 2014 Margo Taussig Pinkerton. All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278.  919-643-3036 before 9 pm east coast USA, GMT-5, or by e-mail at TBC (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com.
There was controversy that only the first 4,000, give or take, locals could access the area within the chain-link fence. No kids, of course. But, Crested Butte is a tourist town, and this will bring in future tourists. And while it is inconvenient for some of the residents, after the ad and festivities are over, the town will return to normal.

Arnie and I went up to CB, as Crested Butte is often known, to check out things for the workshop. A huge blue gorilla greeted us, and we passed an equally large blue cowboy boot. After checking out some favorite spots and stores, some of which had been replaced or moved since last year, we stopped at our favorite place for lunch, sat outside, and watched the goings on. The town had turned blue. Bike racks … blue. Lamp posts … blue. Banners … blue. Even part of Elk Avenue .. blue. Yes, really, the beer crew had painted several blocks blue, all apparently to be returned to normal after the weekend is over.

The whole thing was so bizarre, we had to photograph elements of it. With all the confusion, it was hard to isolate subjects to get a good shot. Arnie concentrated on legs.© 2014 Arnold Zann. All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278.  919-643-3036 before 9 pm east coast USA, GMT-5, or by e-mail at Arnie (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com.and Continue reading 

Coping with Copyright Infringement

3 Sep

Updated September 5, 2014 with an addition protection noted.

or HELP, my work has been pilfered!

© 2010 Margo Taussig Pinkerton.  All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, please e-mail TBC (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com or contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278 or at 919-643-3036 before 9 p.m. east-coast time, GMT-5.Normally, I would wait until Saturday to publish the next blog, but copyright infringement is too important to ignore, and people have been asking how to cope when it happens to them…

I have written about © Is for Copyright, The Value of Photography, and even Pricing Photography.

I have shown you how to Create a Copyright Template in Lightroom and Bridge, and encouraged you to Update Copyright Notices on Website and Blog.

You can do all the right things, watermark your images, even Digimarc your images, and still, people will steal your images … use them without your permission.

What to do?

Arnie and I have been the victims of copyright infringement over the years, and we have always fought it. It isn’t easy, and it takes time and patience. These days, it is impractical for most of us to initiate a lawsuit against the perpetrators — at least $10,000 up front at last count, probably more these days — but thanks to new laws, we do have recourse.

But let’s start of the beginning of our most recent case…

First, we Digimarc all our images that are sent by e-mail or to the Internet. Yes, there is an annual subscription fee, but for us, it is worth it. It has enabled us to find a number of cases of copyright infringement for way more than a decade.

About once a month, sometimes more, I head to our Digimarc account and do a search for our images that appear on the Internet. This is where you need to know how to do a screen shot. Most computers these days come with their own screen-shot program. If not, just do an Internet search.

When I embark on ferreting out copyright infringement, I do screen shots every step of the way. That way, I have irrefutable proof of the infringment. Always include the http:// address at the top as you will see in the examples below.

At Digimarc, this is what came up in my last search:© 2014 Margo Taussig Pinkerton.  All Rights Reserved.  For usage and fees, please e-mail TBC (at) BCphotoadventures (dot) com or contact us at 310 Lafayette Drive, Hillsborough, NC  27278 or at 919-643-3036 before 9 p.m. east-coast time, GMT-5.

Hmmm. We never gave permission to “Melissa B” to use our photographs, and who is this http://photobomb-pictures.fbistan.com? So, I clicked on the “Melissa B” link to find Continue reading